On the heels of the launch of their own new social networking site, Google is now taking on another new venture: detecting malware. Not all malware though. Only certain kinds and only when you are using Google’s site—so don’t think that Google is now a replacement for your regular scheduled virus scans (which you’re still doing daily, right?).
In a post on Google’s official blog, security engineer Damian Menscher explained how routine maintenance at one of Google’s data centers uncovered some “unusual search traffic”. Further investigation revealed that this traffic originated from computers infected with certain kinds of malware.
Up until now Google has only presented people with alerts about potentially compromised websites in its search engine window. With this newly uncovered information it can now add detecting malware under its belt. If you are unfortunate enough to be infected by this kind of malware, Google will detect it and break the news to you. You’ll see a bright prominent warning at the top of your Google search results page with a link to learn how to fix it.
You may be skeptical to believe a notification of infection with an accompanying link to fix it. You should as this is a widely known trick most of today’s malware uses. When the warning comes from Google though, it’s the real deal so feel free to click the link! Just remember that Google will only be checking for this certain kind of malware when you are using its site. If you see this sort of alert elsewhere, it’s a scam!